Oakland Raiders in good hands with new GM Mike Mayock
By Brad Weiss
Mike Mayock may not have been the obvious choice for the Oakland Raiders as general manager, but he is proving to be a natural at the position.
When the Oakland Raiders made Mike Mayock their new general manager, it was met with plenty of sceptism. Media personalities looked to the fact that he had no experience as an executive at the NFL level, and felt that he only got the job due to his relationship with Raiders head coach Jon Gruden.
No matter how Mayock got the job, Raider Nation has to be happy that he does, especially after the performance he has been putting on since the new league year started. Mayock has brought big-name players to the Silver and Black, and heading into the 2019 NFL Draft, Oakland may be the most improved team in all of football.
Coming off a four-win season in Gruden’s return to the sidelines, it was pretty obvious that changes needed to be made. Former general manager Reggie McKenzie was let go prior to the end of the season, and it did not take long for Oakland to tab their next general manager, as Mayock was hired in early January.
Since coming to Oakland, Mayock has shown incredible work ethic, matching the kind of maniacal approach the Gruden has to his day-to-day routine. The tandem has worked out beautifully so far, and it has shown with the talent that will be putting on the Raiders jersey in 2019.
So far, Mayock has fixed the wide receiver group, bringing in Antonio Brown, J.J. Nelson, and Tyrell Williams, and has brought in talent to the secondary. In addition, he added a middle linebacker in Vontaze Burfict, a starting offensive tackle in Trent Brown, as well as other pieces that will add good depth to the roster moving forward.
Next month, the Raiders will dominate headlines once again, as they currently hold three first round picks in the 2019 NFL Draft. Starting at pick No. 4, Oakland will actually select four times in the first 35 selections, which means they could add at least four legitimate starters to the roster this April as well.
There are still holes to fill, including at running back, on the edge, and at linebacker to name a few, so the work is still out there for Mayock and Gruden. ESPN’s Paul Gutierrez recently reported they were aggressive in free agency so they could be “surgical” in the draft, so exciting times are still ahead for this organization.
The NFL Draft is a little over a month away, and the moves Mayock and company make then will reshape this franchise for the next five to ten years. He has proven to have the Midas Touch so far in year one as the Raiders general manager, and being a former draft analyst, the best may be yet to come.